Seasonal Affective Depression

Bright light therapy(BLT) is one of the treatments for seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a condition commonly during winter. Light is found to deal with depression by reducing the effects.

Can BLT deal with depression of other types other than SAD?
A team of scientists in Amsterdam psychiatric institution conducted a study looking at elderly population, as elderly have poorer vision and seldom go out. After completion, more than half
of the patients had lesser symptoms. Given that Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is more serious, which can lead to suicide and take years to treat in hospitals. Thus, BLT deals with depression successfully to a certain extent and with little or no side effects.

How BLT benefits?
It is able to lower cortisol, known as ‘the stress hormone’. Moreover, it deals with depression by helping patients to sleep better and they woke up earlier and never stay in bed unlike depressed people.

It is unclear for the long-term extent of benefits in dealing with depression, since the study was only three weeks. Nevertheless, for just a while, even serious mental illness patients may feel happier on a sunny day at the beach.

What is SAD and how to deal with depression?

by The Anti Depression Team on

Every winter season, night times are usually longer. With the cold and darkness, people may get seasonal depression. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a condition, which includes oversleeping, anxiousness, antisocial and weight-gaining. It is common during late fall or early winter, more often in women and people with family history of depression.

Ways to deal with depression:

1. Increasing the level of melatonin
Everyday your body produces melatonin, a hormone that contributes to your mood and sleep. Taking supplement to regulate production helps to deal with depression and improve sleep.Consult your doctor before consuming. Also, fish-oil pills are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and can help dealing with depression. Furthermore, they are beneficial to your heart. Other sources are salmon, mackerel, flax seed and walnuts.

2. Make yourself relax through yoga and other means
Some people deal with depression by practising yoga. It requires the training of breathing exercises. Regular quiet slow breathing helps to lower blood pressure, relaxation and relieve stress. Another aspect of yoga is mindfulness meditation which helps organizing your mind and
thought and seeks balance against mood swings. Possible alternative ways are guided imagery, acupuncture and massage therapy.

3. Be expose to sunlight more
Even when it’s cold, going out helps to deal with depression as you may not get sunlight at home. Invest on warm clothing and go for long walks or a bike ride in the day. Such physical activity deals with depression by reducing stress and improving sleep and mood. Do open the curtains and remove sun-blocking objects.

4. Complete darkness when you sleep
Sleep in total darkness deal with depression by boosting sleep quality. Turn off all lights, the TV, computer, BlackBerry and close the curtains. Our body is affected with light and dark. Light exposure in the day signals the body production of certain hormones that makes you alert. It is said that outdoor light is much brighter that indoor. Hormonal level differs in the dark, producing melatonin, and body temperature drops, reminding bedtime. Significantly, irregular sleep cycle can worsen symptoms, harder to deal with depression.

5. Be warm and make friends

Socialising deal with depression effectively especially during winter where people avoid meeting up. Maintaining good relationships with family and friends are essential to us. Studies found that
good relationships lower risk of depression, diseases and even longer life than people with fewer friends. This plays a part on your long-term happiness, more important than income. Make the effort to call a friend, go out together. Your mood will improve greatly.

About Seasonal Affective Depression

There is still debate as to whether there is a unique seasonal mood disorder that gets worse with the seasonal changes as depressed individuals feel alone more and isolated. This unique depressions classified as SAD have different times of occurances. A classic, easily relatable cycle, depressed individuals experience symptoms of depression regularly in the fall, […]

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